England London South Mission: July 9, 2015- July 2017
Family/ Friends please send letters to letter address and packages to package address. I will update letter address if a transfer were to take place. Package address will remain the same. Thanks!

Letters Address:
RH11 9GA

Packages Address:
Elder Zachary Rivera
England London South Mission
The London Temple
West Park Road
Newchapel, Surrey RH7 6NB
United Kingdom

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

The Waters of Eternity...

So Elder Walker... you're telling me I can't go there?

Today marks a special day and milestone for me... three years ago today I embarked on the journey of a lifetime as I entered into promises with God through baptism by someone(my best friend Statler) holding the power and authority of God(or the Priesthood). I can't believe how much has changed over these past three years. I don't know where to really begin to explain it all. Most of you will have to just hear or see it all when I return home but all I can say is that I have never looked back. I haven't had any reason to. It has been by far... the greatest decision I have ever made thus far in my life.

Three years ago I never expected to be where and who I am today. I've shared recently a little bit about that but it is true. I never expected to be on a mission(let alone finishing my mission in a few weeks) and also knowing the things I know now. It truly has been a promising journey that I hope some if not all, will embark on the same journey I did. I look back and I am just so grateful to the friends I had, the examples they were to me and for the graceful hand of God placing them and their families in my life that helped me get to this point of my life. My mission has taught me three things that I've kind of made my "life motto" and I love to remind myself about it often and it is, "Remember who you are. Remember why you're here. Remember what it took to get here." So much has been put into these past three years. I always used to think that life couldn't have gotten any better but I was wrong. My mission has truly showed me a different view of everything and I'm beginning to see things as God sees them. Not perfect all the time but it's a learning process for sure. Life isn't easy though. Everyone must eventually walk the shores of life before they begin to enter into and appreciate the waters of eternity.

As I reflect upon what has happened since April 12, 2014, all I can think about is what has happened to myself both physically and spiritually. I feel like a new person. I have truly come to know my God and my Savior Jesus Christ. How? It is purely because of the Book of Mormon and the Holy Ghost. When the prophet of God gets up and stands before the world in his physical weakness and bears his testimony with great spiritual strength on "The Power of the Book of Mormon", I can only add my testimony to his that I know what he says is true. I have seen how the Book of Mormon truly does have an effect on both the physical and the spiritual matters of our every day lives. My witness of the Book of Mormon hasn't come from a lightning strike or a vision from heaven, but rather it has come over time as I have read it, pondered over it, and lived by its teaching(along with praying about it). I have seen with my own two eyes what the Book of Mormon can do to people as they read it with a sincere heart, with real intent, and having faith in Christ. It changes you. It changes the way you live your life.

You know you've been out a long time when you come
with ideas like this for accounting.
I'm my own witness of what the Book of Mormon does to the reader. I can look at myself in the mirror and see my spiritual testimony in the physical. I think about what I knew coming into my mission and it is nowhere near where I am now. It is a tender mercy to see the "seed" grow as I have nourished it.(Alma 32) The Holy Ghost truly does help us to remember all things(John 14:26) and can bring all things to remembrance that we once knew. Hence, I believe firmly that this life is all about remembering. We all knew these things to be true long ago and we defended them and were willing to do the same on earth. This life... is all meant to help you travel along the journey until you come to the destination of remembering what you once knew so you never forget it again. I'm so grateful for the Book of Mormon and for living prophets and apostles. I am also very grateful for a
merciful God who loves me enough to give me challenges that are sometimes bigger than me, but He always provides a way for me to accomplish whatever He puts in my path. My life has been full of adversity and I love it because I thrive in the opposition. It's who I was before this life and it's who I always will be. Above all, I am grateful for my Savior. He is my Champion who walked through the valley of the shadow of death and went through what He did so I don't have to. It has been a glorious three years so far and I know there are so many more blessings in store to come throughout the rest of my life because of the decision I made to be baptized and join the Lord's only true and living church upon the earth today. There's no going back and I know where and who I stand with, for He will always go before me and He will be on my right hand and on my left with His Spirit in my heart and His angels round about me to bear me up.

This is only a portion of what has truly happened and it will take a lifetime to continue to share what exactly has happened to me with those I love most and those I keep close. I love you all and I just wanted to thank you for everything so far! There's only so much that words on a text can say but I can't wait to express my gratitude to you soon! Have another great week!

Verses of the Week:

Book of Mormon:
The Testimony of Three Witnesses:
"We know of a surety that the work is true" "We beheld and bear record that these things are true." "We should bear record of it." "We bear testimony of these things."

Doctrine and Covenants:
D&C 110:9
"Yea the hearts of thousands and tens of thousands shall greatly rejoice in consequence of the blessings which shall be poured out, and the endowment with which my servants have been endowed in this house."

Quote of the Week:
Remember who you are.
Remember why you're here.
Remember what it took to get here.

General Conference Quote of the Week:
The Beauty of Holiness
"In strength and honor, we forsake the ways of the world and keep our covenants, that we may be “clothed with purity, yea, even with the robe of righteousness."

-Elder Rivera

No comments:

Post a Comment